Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 21st Oct 2013 22:33 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems

The French Minitel never ceases to amaze me.

In 1984 the government allowed developers to create services for the Minitel. The government took a 30% cut and passed the rest on to developers (sound familiar?) creating the world's first app store. From a user's perspective using apps on the Minitel was frictionless - you were just billed for what you used through your phone bill.


How big was this app store? In the nineties it was pulling in over a billion USD a year! This is an astronomical sum when you consider France's population size. Though the crossover point is near, the Minitel in its lifetime paid out more to developers than Apple has to iOS developers to date. Companies would advertise their apps in the subway, on highway billboards, and on television.

Amazing. This could very well be the first application store, something many people think is a new phenomenon invented by Apple.

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RE[7]: Success
by SeeM on Tue 22nd Oct 2013 09:35 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Success"
Member since:

"Iphone wasn't first smartphone that worked. It was first smartphone that was simply used by people.

Err no. BlackBerry smartphones (such as the Pearl) predates iPhone and was easy enough to use for anyone. Apple's brand-recognition and marketing targeted at Joe User was what brought the iPhone mainstream success.

Anyone in UK you mean? Carriers essentially killed BB for me. Well, prizes of software, too.

You're right about marketing, it was one of the reasons for success. Apple did convince Joe: yes, you need smartphone and yes, you can handle it, because it's not a Pocket PC anymore.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[8]: Success
by Soulbender on Tue 22nd Oct 2013 18:01 in reply to "RE[7]: Success"
Soulbender Member since:

Agreed, BB's insane pricing model probably didn't help either.

Reply Parent Score: 2